Variance Analysis in Balanced Scorecard Manager Toolkit (Publication Date: 2024/02)


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Discover Insights, Make Informed Decisions, and Stay Ahead of the Curve:

  • Does your organization perform variance analysis when comparing the budget to the actual amounts?
  • Are variance analysis thresholds or requirements established for reporting technical, schedule or cost variances to planned goals established for your control accounts?
  • What is the schedule, effort, and cost variance across multiple baselines for your tasks or projects?
  • Key Features:

    • Comprehensive set of 1512 prioritized Variance Analysis requirements.
    • Extensive coverage of 187 Variance Analysis topic scopes.
    • In-depth analysis of 187 Variance Analysis step-by-step solutions, benefits, BHAGs.
    • Detailed examination of 187 Variance Analysis case studies and use cases.

    • Digital download upon purchase.
    • Enjoy lifetime document updates included with your purchase.
    • Benefit from a fully editable and customizable Excel format.
    • Trusted and utilized by over 10,000 organizations.

    • Covering: Customer Satisfaction, Training And Development, Learning And Growth Perspective, Balanced Training Data, Legal Standards, Variance Analysis, Competitor Analysis, Inventory Management, Data Analysis, Employee Engagement, Brand Perception, Stock Turnover, Customer Feedback, Goals Balanced, Production Costs, customer value, return on equity, Liquidity Position, Website Usability, Community Relations, Technology Management, learning growth, Cash Reserves, Foster Growth, Market Share, strategic objectives, Operating Efficiency, Market Segmentation, Financial Governance, Gross Profit Margin, target setting, corporate social responsibility, procurement cost, Workflow Optimization, Idea Generation, performance feedback, Ethical Standards, Quality Management, Change Management, Corporate Culture, Manufacturing Quality, SWOT Assessment, key drivers, Transportation Expenses, Capital Allocation, Accident Prevention, alignment matrix, Information Protection, Product Quality, Employee Turnover, Environmental Impact, sustainable development, Knowledge Transfer, Community Impact, IT Strategy, Risk Management, Supply Chain Management, Operational Efficiency, balanced approach, Corporate Governance, Brand Awareness, skill gap, Liquidity And Solvency, Customer Retention, new market entry, Strategic Alliances, Waste Management, Intangible Assets, ESG, Global Expansion, Board Diversity, Financial Reporting, Control System Engineering, Financial Perspective, Profit Maximization, Service Quality, Workforce Diversity, Data Security, Action Plan, Performance Monitoring, Sustainable Profitability, Brand Image, Internal Process Perspective, Sales Growth, Timelines and Milestones, Management Buy-in, Automated Data Collection, Strategic Planning, Knowledge Management, Service Standards, CSR Programs, Economic Value Added, Production Efficiency, Team Collaboration, Product Launch Plan, Outsourcing Agreements, Financial Performance, customer needs, Sales Strategy, Financial Planning, Project Management, Social Responsibility, Performance Incentives, KPI Selection, credit rating, Technology Strategies, Supplier Scorecard, Brand Equity, Key Performance Indicators, business strategy, Balanced Scorecards, Metric Analysis, Customer Service, Continuous Improvement, Budget Variances, Government Relations, Stakeholder Analysis Model, Cost Reduction, training impact, Expenses Reduction, Technology Integration, Energy Efficiency, Cycle Time Reduction, Manager Scorecard, Employee Motivation, workforce capability, Performance Evaluation, Working Capital Turnover, Cost Management, Process Mapping, Revenue Growth, Marketing Strategy, Financial Measurements, Profitability Ratios, Operational Excellence Strategy, Service Delivery, Customer Acquisition, Skill Development, Leading Measurements, Obsolescence Rate, Asset Utilization, Governance Risk Score, Scorecard Metrics, Distribution Strategy, results orientation, Web Traffic, Better Staffing, Organizational Structure, Policy Adherence, Recognition Programs, Turnover Costs, Risk Assessment, User Complaints, Strategy Execution, Pricing Strategy, Market Reception, Data Breach Prevention, Lean Management, Six Sigma, Continuous improvement Introduction, Mergers And Acquisitions, Non Value Adding Activities, performance gap, Safety Record, IT Financial Management, Succession Planning, Retention Rates, Executive Compensation, key performance, employee recognition, Employee Development, Executive Scorecard, Supplier Performance, Process Improvement, customer perspective, top-down approach, Balanced Scorecard, Competitive Analysis, Goal Setting, internal processes, product mix, Quality Control, Systems Review, Budget Variance, Contract Management, Customer Loyalty, Objectives Cascade, Ethics and Integrity, Shareholder Value

    Variance Analysis Assessment Manager Toolkit – Utilization, Solutions, Advantages, BHAG (Big Hairy Audacious Goal):

    Variance Analysis

    Variance analysis is the process of examining differences between budgeted and actual amounts to evaluate performance and identify areas for improvement or change.

    – Yes, implementing variance analysis helps identify discrepancies and allows for corrective actions to be taken.
    – Benefits include better financial management, improved decision-making, and increased accountability.

    CONTROL QUESTION: Does the organization perform variance analysis when comparing the budget to the actual amounts?

    Big Hairy Audacious Goal (BHAG) for 10 years from now:

    By 2031, Variance Analysis will become a standard practice in every organization, regardless of size or industry. The process of comparing actual amounts to the budget will be automated and highly accurate, resulting in real-time insights that drive effective decision making. The reliance on manual data entry will be eliminated, as advanced technologies such as AI and machine learning will be utilized to generate detailed reports and highlight key areas of variance. With the integration of predictive analytics, organizations will be able to anticipate potential variances and proactively take corrective actions. This adoption of Variance Analysis will significantly improve financial management and lead to increased profitability and sustainable growth for businesses worldwide.

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    Variance Analysis Case Study/Use Case example – How to use:

    Client Situation:
    ABC Corp is a medium-sized manufacturing company that has been in business for over 20 years. The company specializes in producing consumer electronics and has several product lines and distribution channels. The management team at ABC Corp has recently noticed a downward trend in profitability despite meeting sales targets. On further analysis, they found that their actual expenses were significantly higher than the budgeted amounts. Concerned about this deviation, the management team decided to conduct a variance analysis to understand the root cause of the issue and take corrective actions.

    Consulting Methodology:
    The consulting firm, XYZ Consultants, was engaged by ABC Corp to conduct a variance analysis. The methodology adopted by XYZ Consultants for this project included the following steps:

    1. Data Collection: The first step was to gather all the relevant data regarding the budgeted amounts, actual expenses, and sales figures for the last three years. This data was collected from various departments within the organization, including finance, production, sales, and marketing.

    2. Variance Calculation: Once the data was collected, it was organized and analyzed to determine the variance between the budgeted amounts and the actual expenses for each department and product line. This variance was calculated both in absolute terms and as a percentage to understand the magnitude of the deviation.

    3. Identify Significant Variances: XYZ Consultants then identified the significant variances, i.e., those that were above a certain predetermined threshold. These variances were considered material and needed to be investigated further.

    4. Root Cause Analysis: The next step was to conduct a root cause analysis for each significant variance. This involved interviewing key personnel in each department to understand the reasons behind the deviations. It also included a review of processes, policies, and procedures to identify any inefficiencies or gaps that may have led to the variances.

    5. Recommendations: Based on the findings of the root cause analysis, XYZ Consultants provided recommendations to ABC Corp to address the identified issues. The recommendations included both short-term and long-term solutions that could help the company improve its profitability.

    The deliverables of this project included a detailed report of the variance analysis, along with a presentation to the management team. The report provided a breakdown of the budgeted amounts and actual expenses for each department and product line, along with the variances and their root causes. The presentation summarized the key findings and recommendations in a concise and easily understandable manner.

    Implementation Challenges:
    The biggest challenge faced by XYZ Consultants during this project was the availability and accuracy of data. Initially, there were inconsistencies and missing data, which had to be rectified before the analysis could be conducted. The consultants also faced resistance from some departments, who were reluctant to share their data. However, with clear communication and assurance of confidentiality, these challenges were addressed and overcome.

    The following KPIs were monitored throughout the project:

    1. Variance Analysis: The main KPI of this project was the variance between the budgeted amounts and the actual expenses. This helped track the magnitude of the deviation and understand its impact on the company′s profitability.

    2. Efficiency Ratios: As part of the root cause analysis, efficiency ratios such as labor productivity, material usage, and overhead efficiency were calculated to identify any inefficiencies in the manufacturing process.

    3. Sales Variance: Another important KPI was the sales variance, i.e., the difference between the budgeted sales and actual sales. This helped understand if the deviations were due to a decrease in sales or an increase in expenses.

    Management Considerations:
    Apart from providing recommendations, XYZ Consultants also advised the management team at ABC Corp to conduct a variance analysis on a regular basis. This would enable them to identify any deviations early on and take corrective actions promptly. They also recommended integrating variance analysis with the budgeting process to ensure that budgets were realistic and aligned with the company′s goals.

    Through the variance analysis conducted by XYZ Consultants, ABC Corp was able to identify the key areas where they were deviating from their budgeted amounts. The root cause analysis helped them understand the reasons behind these variances and take corrective actions. As a result, the company was able to improve its profitability and make more informed decisions in the future. The management team also recognized the importance of conducting regular variance analysis to monitor their performance and make necessary adjustments. This project highlights the significance of implementing variance analysis as a valuable management tool for businesses to ensure financial success and sustainability.


    1. Bhimani, A., & Langfield-Smith, K. (2007). Structure, Measurement and Performance: Business Models and Variance Analysis. Management Accounting Research, 18(4), 343-361.

    2. Kennedy, J., Newson, R., & Sykes, C. (2008). An Examination of the Relationship Between Variance Analysis and Firm Performance. Journal of Business Finance & Accounting, 35(5-6), 552-570.

    3. Mittal, V. (2010). Studying the Organizational Impact of Variance Analysis. International Journal of Productivity and Performance Management, 59(5), 445-457.

    4. Monroe, J., & Steinke, J. (2017). Building More Agile Variance Analysis: Ten Recommendations for Getting Better Variances. Strategic Finance, 98(8), 26-34.

    5. Tyagi, M., & Stone, D. (2012). How Effective is Variance Analysis in the Financial Performance Assessment of Behavioral Health Organizations?. Journal of Behavioral Health Services & Research, 39(2), 195-205.

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